Black Spot Barb: Puntius filamentosus
The Black Spot Barb is found in southern and southwest India, and in Sri Lankan mountain streams. Full length of this fish is 15 cm. The male has extended dorsal fin rays, and he gets a spawning rash on the snout above the upper jaw. This barb doesn’t reach sexual maturity until at least 18 months of age.
When I spawned them I used a 40 gallon tank, the measurements were 4 x 1 x 1, with a spawning grid along the bottom. When the spawning takes place it is among plants at the surface, and is very vigorous. During the brief act of mating the male presses against the female and lightly entwines her body with his tail fin to squeeze the eggs out of her. The number of eggs released from the female is large. When spawning is over the parents should be removed from the tank, and half the water should be replaced with fresh water of the same composition and temperature. Colour the water faintly with Methylene Blue. The eggs hatch in approximately 48 hours.
Black Tetra: Gymnocorymbus ternetzi
The Black Tetra is found in Paraguay and Gaupore rivers. The full length of the female is five cm, and the male is smaller in size. The female is a lot fuller bodied than the male.
The tank size I used was a five-gallon. There was a spawning grid on the bottom and the water temperature was 79º C. I put three females and two males together. The eggs take about 20 to 24 hours to hatch, and the adults should be taken out before the eggs hatch.
Checker Barb: Capoeta oligolepis , Syn. Barbus oligolepis, Puntius oligolepis
The Checker Barbs’ natural habitat is found in Sumatra. They eat both live and artificial foods. They can be kept in a community tank with other barbs or tetras. At full length they grow to be 1.5cm. The male’s body has a brick red and black checker pattern, and his fins are red and edged with a dominant black border. The male is slimmer than the female.
The Checker Barbs’ spawning habit is egg scattering, so when I set up a 10 gallon tank I laid a spawning grid along the bottom to separate the eggs from the parents. I sunk some fine leafed plants to make the pair feel more comfortable, and also to give the female some hiding places after spawning. I put a sponge filter in the tank and I set the temperature to about 77º C. The barbs spawned about three days later. I could see the eggs along the bottom -but they were extremely hard to see because they are so small. The eggs take 36 hours to hatch, and you must remove the parents as soon as you think they have spawned – they will eat any eggs or fry if they can. The young do best when they are fed hatched brine shrimp.
Cherry Barb: Capoeta Titteya
Cherry Barbs are found in shallow brooks and lowland rivers in Sri Lanka. Their full size is five cm. The male is red, and the female is brownish with a black stripe on her side. To breed them, I put three males and two females in a fifteen gallon tank with a spawning grid in the bottom. The water temperature was 78º C. The act of spawning lasts three to four hours. The female releases one to two eggs at a time and up to 300 in all. The eggs take 24 hours to hatch and the parents should be removed once they are finished spawning.
Convict Cichlid: Cichlasoma nigrofasciatum
Convicts are fairly popular and easy to breed. They are found in Guatemala at Lake Atitlan and Lake Amatillan. These fish are aggressive and should be kept in a mono-species tank. They consume live and artificial foods. Their colouration is grey with black vertical stripes. At full length Convicts grow to be 15cm. The male has long drawn-out dorsal and anal fins. The female is smaller, her fins are shorter, and the hind part of her belly is coloured bronze. There is a Convict with the same Latin name but the colouration is different – they are pink without any stripes.
The Convicts’ spawning habit is substrate, so when I set up a tank for my pair I put gravel on the bottom, with some flat rocks and a few plants. There was a sponge filter and the temperature was set at 75º C. Convicts continuously dig and build up the gravel. This is because when the young have hatched the parents move them to a pit they have made. The parents can remain with the young until they are interested in spawning again. The female looks after the eggs while the male protects the boundaries. Eggs take three days to hatch, and fry should be fed hatched brine shrimp, sifted zooplankton, or sifted egg yolk. The young grow quickly and evenly if they are fed a sufficient amount of food.
Honey Gourami: Colisa chuna
The Honey Gourami is found in Assam and Bangladesh. At full length this fish is 5 cm. The male is intensely brownish red in colouration. The female is more of a grey brown; she is fuller in the body with a brown band extending from the eye to the caudal fin.
When we first went out and bought our Honey Gouramis they were too young to sex, so we bought six. We ended up having two males and four females. I put one male and two females in a 20-gallon tank that only had six inches of water in it. The temperature was set at 78º C. I put a lot of duckweed in the tank. The eggs take 12 to 18 hours to hatch.
by Jim & Jennifer Bahry
First published in The Brant Aquatic Enquirer, newsletter of The Brant Aquarium Society.